James Todd Smith (born January 14, 1968), better known as LL Cool J (short for Ladies Love Cool James), is an American rapper, entrepreneur, and actor. He is known for pioneering hip-hop tracks such as "I Can't Live Without My Radio", "I'm Bad", "The Boomin' System", "Rock The Bells", and "Mama Said Knock You Out" as well as romantic ballads such as "I Need Love", "Around the Way Girl", and "Hey Lover".
He has released thirteen studio albums and two greatest hits compilations, including 2008's Exit 13, the last for his record deal with Def Jam Recordings. His latest album, Authentic, was released on April 30, 2013. He has also appeared in numerous films, including Halloween H20: 20 Years Later. He is also well known as a serious bodybuilder, and currently stars in an action role as NCIS Special Agent Sam Hanna on the CBS crime drama television series NCIS: Los Angeles, and is the host of Lip Sync Battle on Spikeclose